Monday, January 21, 2008
There is a saying I have used for quite a while in speaking of my favorite football player of all time, Brett Favre. It is this:
“You live by the Favre and you die by the Favre”.
Not the most original thought in the world, but I started using it in 2001, when Favre demonstrated his genius by leading the team to a phenomenal 12-4 and a brilliant opener in the playoffs against SF, only to turn around at St Louis and throw SIX interceptions. This cycle has repeated itself quite a bit in the post-Reggie White era. Many moments of brilliance, followed by a thud as he is shot down in a blaze of glory at the end of each season.
But, I say this time and time again, as painful as it is, if you are going to celebrate the good, you must live with the bad. Because the good is dependent on the bad. That is why I have patience for Tony Romo, who I believe is cut from the same cloth. You cannot be a gunslinger who never throws a bad interception. That is the whole point. If you want a singles hitter, you can get a guy who doesn’t strike out. But, if you want a home run hitter, understand that he is going to strike out quite a bit. Give me Favre and Romo over Eli any day of the week. However, It should be noted that they are both home, and Eli is going to the Super Bowl.
And last night, when Favre and the Packers needed it most….Favre struck out. And the season, that was thought to have fairy tale qualities, went quietly into the night. He has won more games than any QB in history. He has thrown more Touchdowns than any QB in history. And, he has thrown more interceptions than any QB in history.
So, with your Cowboys and my Packers gone, here are the New York Giants in the Super Bowl. They will be 2 Touchdown under-dogs to the New England Patriots. Not quite the matchup I had projected, but for the 3rd playoff week in a row, the Giants did not luck, fluke, or fall into a playoff win. They went on the road and took it. They are red-hot. And they are not making mistakes. If somehow the Packers would have won that game, you would have felt that the Giants were unlucky. The Giants had the better of Green Bay on both sides of the ball. They just flat out tanned their hides, and earned the win, just like they did the week before in Irving.
The following are all of the notes I could muster from the Championship Weekend:
• Eli is unstoppable. All jokes aside, I would have never imagined he would walk in to Dallas and then in to Lambeau and play two flawless games. I am not even sure he was close to interceptions. He methodically marched the Giants down the field last night with great routine, and made solid throw after solid throw. I just cannot explain this, because I am not sure I recall a QB looking more clueless during the season, but then for the first time in his career, he plays perfect football under the most pressure. I would always take Romo over Eli, and then Favre over Eli, but he gets the last laugh on both of them. This, ladies and gentlemen, is why we play the games. You cannot predict nor write this stuff.
• Despite watching the Patriots all season long, I guess it hasn’t occurred to me that Chris Hansen, of Dateline NBC, actually punts for New England. Nice.
• Football is pretty easy to understand. Score Touchdowns and you win. Kick Field Goals, and you likely lose. Yards, first downs, and QB Ratings don't mean too much. Did you get 7 or 3? That is what matters.
• Antonio Pierce blowing up the screen pass when he was the only Giants player taking on 3 GB linemen was amazing. And game changing?
• Laurence Maroney and Marion Barber shared the same backfield in Minnesota. In 2004, the Gophers lost 5 of their last 7 games, and finished 7-5. How was that even possible? They are both machines! Maroney had 1413 and Barber had 1344 yards. I am guessing that team didn’t have too much at other spots on the field. I am impressed at how hard they both run. Maroney runs with that same reckless abandon and tries to run you over. What a weapon.
• Speaking of trying to run you over, Brandon Jacobs dominated. He ran over Charles Woodsen in the first half, but since he is a DB, I was more impressed when he took MLB Nick Barnett for a 9 yard ride. What a beast.
• Mark Tauscher did about as good as anyone could be expected to do against Michael Strahan. One week after totally shutting down Patrick Kerney, he kept Strahan off Favre for most of the night. And, then he recovered that fumble off the Interception on a play that made you think the football gods wanted Green Bay to win. That, and the Sam Madison penalty, and the Tynes shank, the missed KGB offside penalty, and about 4 other plays. Despite everything bouncing the Packers way, they still lost. Vomit.
• I personally thought the CBS guys were being awful tough on Phillip Rivers. He stood in there and tried to make some throws under pressure. If Chris Chambers fights for the ball a little harder, Rivers might have had better numbers. I don’t think too much of Rivers, but I thought he played his butt off yesterday standing in there and showing courage.
• Quinten Jammer has really developed into a nice CB, eh? Wasn’t sure his rookie year, but I like his game.
• Junior Seau made some huge plays yesterday. I know it will be easy to say he piggybacked the team for a ring, but he made two of the bigger defensive plays for New England yesterday.
• After the first game of the season I wrote this about Plaxico: Why isn’t Plaxico Burress one of the best WR’s in the game? He has every ability. He is fast, he is huge, he has good hands. Does he always play hard? Does he have a QB that knows how to use him? Not sure about those questions, but I just don’t think he has lived up to his potential. He is truly one of those players that can be as good as he wants to be because he has all the tools. What a stud. Credit to Jacques Reeves for fighting his tail off last night, but it was a man versus a boy...Looking back, I think he has shown so much in 2007. Burress is a stud. Al Harris was no match for him, and he has proven what he is all about this year fighting through his injuries. Last night, he was so impressive.
• That yawning Cowboys commercial, where the Giants cream Romo after a yawn in the huddle, is tough to watch these days.
• What was Favre looking at on that last interception? What a rookie throw.
• I guess the Ryan Grant story had an odd ending in 2007. Pretty much an anonymous championship game.
• Perhaps as odd an ending as Ladanian Tomlinson. I just don’t understand his role in the game. If he wasn’t right, why start him? If he was right, why not try him more? He didn’t look like he was enjoying himself at all.
• The New York Giants are the only thing to stand between the Patriots bid for football immortality. I know nobody will give the Giants a chance (including me), but how many weeks in a row are the Giants going to make everyone look stupid?
Giants Triumph Packers
I know I should write more today, but with this aching groin, I need to find some ice.
Posted by Sturminator at 8:57 AM